United Nations Central Emergency Fund allocates $75 million to 14 underfunded crises

from UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Published on 06 Feb 2009
(New York: 6 February) - The United Nations Emergency Relief Coordinator, John Holmes, today allocated some $75 million to boost humanitarian response in 14 chronically neglected emergencies where people are daily dying of hunger, malnutrition, disease, and conflict around the world.

The funds made available today will be granted to United Nations humanitarian agencies and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and through them to partner organizations, including non-governmental organizations (NGOs), to support humanitarian projects in the affected countries. Countries were selected to receive grants based on an analysis of the funding levels of their aid programmes, the severity of the humanitarian needs, security, and other constraints on aid delivery.

Humanitarian actors in Zimbabwe received the largest single allocation, of some $11 million. Agencies working in Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), Ethiopia and Somalia will receive allocations of $10 million per country. Humanitarian agencies in Yemen will receive $5 million, as will humanitarian partners in Colombia and Haiti. Meanwhile, programmes in Burundi and Niger will receive $4 million, and Myanmar $3 million. Humanitarian actors in Burkina Faso, Cote d'Ivoire, Djibouti, and Eritrea will each receive $2 million.

This is the first round of allocations from CERF's window for underfunded emergencies in 2009. The second round will be in July. In 2008, a total of $ 128 million was allocated to underfunded emergencies. Since 2006, the CERF has provided over $328 million to chronically neglected crises in 33 countries.

CERF is funded by voluntary contributions from Member States, non-governmental organisations, local governments, the private sector and individual donors. This year, the donors pledged nearly $390 million in support of the Fund. As mandated by the General Assembly, CERF commits one-third of all funds each year to redress imbalances in the global aid distribution by supporting neglected crises. CERF was established in 2006 to help agencies respond rapidly to new or deteriorating humanitarian situations. Since its establishment, more than 100 Member States and private sector donors have contributed 1.5 billion dollars to CERF, which is administered by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). The Fund has disbursed over $1.1 billion to help millions of victims of natural disasters and conflict in some 70 countries.

For further information, please call: Stephanie Bunker, OCHA-New York, +1 917 367 5126, mobile +1917 892 1679, bunker@un.org; Nicholas Reader +1 212 963 4961, mobile +1 646 752 3117,reader@un.org, John Nyaga, OCHA-NY, + 1 917 367 9262, nyagaj@un.org; Elisabeth Byrs OCHAGeneva,+41 22 917 2653, mobile, +41 79 473 4570, byrs@un.org

OCHA press releases are available at http://ochaonline.un.org or www.reliefweb.int. For more information about CERF, please see http://cerf.un.org

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.